Snooker: Taylor, the comeback marvel of '85, to retire

DENNIS TAYLOR, whose comeback to win the 1985 Embassy World Championship remains one of sport's best remembered moments, says he is to retire from competition at the end of the season.

The 49-year-old from Northern Ireland arrived at his decision this week after losing his opening two matches in the pro-circuit's qualifying school in Plymouth. Taylor, beaten 5-2 by Stephen O'Conner in the European Open preliminaries, said: "After that I started thinking to myself what am I doing here.

"I'm just not enjoying the game anymore and I've always said that when that happens I'll call it a day. I will carry on until the end of the season and the aim is to go out at the World Championship in Sheffield.

"I haven't been back there to play for three years and it would be nice to finish my career at the Crucible where I have my greatest memory."

Taylor, who turned professional in 1971 before the game's rise in popularity, made his breakthrough into the winner's circle by triumphing at the inaugural grand prix in 1984.

However, he will for ever be associated with his match against Steve Davis in the following year's world final. Trailing 8-0, Taylor appeared to be heading towards a heavy defeat but he clawed his way back into contention and, at 12.19am in front of a record 18.5m BBC2 viewers, he sank the black in the deciding frame to win 18-17.

Taylor added: "People still ask me about the final black and the finger- wagging. I don't think a day goes by when it doesn't crop up in conversation with somebody. I hope it continues for a long time."

Stephen Hendry, six times a world champion, said: "Dennis is a great character. When he leaves the competitive scene it will be a big loss for the game."

Taylor, a member of snooker's elite top 16 for 18 consecutive seasons from 1976 onwards, is seventh on the all-time prize-money list with pounds 1,485,892 and has won 14 tournaments world-wide, including the 1987 Benson and Hedges Masters.

In recent years, though, Taylor has found winning form progressively more difficult to achieve. He has lost his last eight matches in pro-events and last season slipped from 34th to 52nd in the world rankings.

Taylor, the oldest player among the top 100, said: "I have a fairly full diary away from the table and it costs me money to set days aside to play in the qualifiers."

Arts and Entertainment
filmPoldark production team claims innocence of viewers' ab frenzy
Life and Style
Google marks the 81st anniversary of the Loch Ness Monster's most famous photograph
techIt's the 81st anniversary of THAT iconic photograph
News
Katie Hopkins makes a living out of courting controversy
people
News
General Election
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Office Administrator

£14000 - £18000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: An Office Administrator is requ...

Recruitment Genius: Sales Executive - Commercial Vehicles - OTE £40,000

£12000 - £40000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Due to expansion and growth of ...

Ashdown Group: Senior PHP Developer - Sheffield - £50,000

£40000 - £50000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Senior PHP Developer position with a...

Recruitment Genius: Operations Leader - Plasma Processing

Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: An Operations Leader is required to join a lea...

Day In a Page

Revealed: Why Mohammed Emwazi chose the 'safe option' of fighting for Isis, rather than following his friends to al-Shabaab in Somalia

Why Mohammed Emwazi chose Isis

His friends were betrayed and killed by al-Shabaab
'The solution can never be to impassively watch on while desperate people drown'
An open letter to David Cameron: Building fortress Europe has had deadly results

Open letter to David Cameron

Building the walls of fortress Europe has had deadly results
Tory candidates' tweets not as 'spontaneous' as they seem - you don't say!

You don't say!

Tory candidates' election tweets not as 'spontaneous' as they appear
Mubi: Netflix for people who want to stop just watching trash

So what is Mubi?

Netflix for people who want to stop just watching trash all the time
The impossible job: how to follow Kevin Spacey?

The hardest job in theatre?

How to follow Kevin Spacey
Armenian genocide: To continue to deny the truth of this mass human cruelty is close to a criminal lie

Armenian genocide and the 'good Turks'

To continue to deny the truth of this mass human cruelty is close to a criminal lie
Lou Reed: The truth about the singer's upbringing beyond the biographers' and memoirists' myths

'Lou needed care, but what he got was ECT'

The truth about the singer's upbringing beyond
Migrant boat disaster: This human tragedy has been brewing for four years and EU states can't say they were not warned

This human tragedy has been brewing for years

EU states can't say they were not warned
Women's sportswear: From tackling a marathon to a jog in the park, the right kit can help

Women's sportswear

From tackling a marathon to a jog in the park, the right kit can help
Hillary Clinton's outfits will be as important as her policies in her presidential bid

Clinton's clothes

Like it or not, her outfits will be as important as her policies
NHS struggling to monitor the safety and efficacy of its services outsourced to private providers

Who's monitoring the outsourced NHS services?

A report finds that private firms are not being properly assessed for their quality of care
Zac Goldsmith: 'I'll trigger a by-election over Heathrow'

Zac Goldsmith: 'I'll trigger a by-election over Heathrow'

The Tory MP said he did not want to stand again unless his party's manifesto ruled out a third runway. But he's doing so. Watch this space
How do Greek voters feel about Syriza's backtracking on its anti-austerity pledge?

How do Greeks feel about Syriza?

Five voters from different backgrounds tell us what they expect from Syriza's charismatic leader Alexis Tsipras
From Iraq to Libya and Syria: The wars that come back to haunt us

The wars that come back to haunt us

David Cameron should not escape blame for his role in conflicts that are still raging, argues Patrick Cockburn
Sam Baker and Lauren Laverne: Too busy to surf? Head to The Pool

Too busy to surf? Head to The Pool

A new website is trying to declutter the internet to help busy women. Holly Williams meets the founders